The west coast beaches of Sri Lanka cover the region from the capital Colombo south towards the charming colonial town Galle. This was one of the first areas to be developed when tourism in Sri Lanka was in the 1970s and a number of famous resort towns and hotels grace the sands along the way.
The first major beach resort as you head down the coastal road is Wadduwa, home to the gorgeous boutique hotel Reef Villa. The next major resort town is Kalutara. Dominated by a magnificent Buddhist temple, there are several package style resorts along this stretch. Further on down more of the same can be found at Beruwela.
One of the major west coast beach resort areas is Bentota. The proximity of a large lagoon and a wide sandy beach means that Bentota is the home of water-sports in Sri Lanka – with everything from diving to kiteboarding to jet-skiing available here. You'll also find a plethora of restaurants, bars and top class hotels in this area.
There are several 5* hotels along this part of the coast, catering to the package holiday market. Towards the southern end of Bentota and inland a little are several quiet and peaceful small boutique hotels.
Ambalangoda is the mask making centre of the island and an interesting visit, and Ahungala is pleasant, but the next major concentration of hotels is at Hikkaduwa. Famous for its lively nightlife, Hikkaduwa also has some of the best restaurants outside of Colombo. We don't generally recommend staying in Hikkaduwa itself: a visit during the evening from nearby Bentota or Galle is usually enough.
Further south from Hikkaduwa is Dodanduwa and the wonderful beachside resort of Aditya. This hotel takes Sri Lanka's beachside accommodation to a completely new level with fantastic design and furnishing. Aditya is a 20-minute drive from Galle and 15 minutes from Hikkaduwa.